A race-ready cycling jersey with a matching fit designed for hot-weather riding
- - Body-hugging fit
- - Breathable fabric helps with cooling
- - Unique, reversible configuration
- - Affordable price point
- - Plenty of pocket room
- - No bunching or jersey creep
- - Summer option only
- - Only one colour combo (for now)
The Invani men's summer jersey is a hot-weather garment boasting a highly breathable fabric and a body-hugging fit. It's also got a pretty unique trick up its sleeve - it's reversible, which provides a frugal, two-in-one solution for those looking at maximising wardrobe space. Despite the cost-saving rhetoric, the jersey is as premium in look, feel and fit as any of its rivals and has become one of my favourite go-to options for both outdoor and indoor riding. But how does it stack up against the current crop of the best cycling jerseys?
Aesthetics and specifications
Minimalism is a common theme among Invani's range of cycling clothing and the men's summer jersey isn't any different. That's not a bad thing of course as this approach means the flat panels of colour make it easier to match with bib shorts and this notion can be pushed even further owing to its reversible configuration. Unlike Invani's six-colour slim-fit reversible line, the jersey pictured here is only available in black/blue colour combination.
This specific jersey takes on a slightly different tack in terms of design compared to its siblings - particularly along the sleeves where the Invani logo motif is stamped across both sides of the jersey. It looks pretty sleek and adds a level of intricacy we haven't yet seen before from the brand. This has also helped Invani separate both designs - blue from black - to provide a genuine second option: the reversible side is plain in design with an Invani wordmark logo on the left sleeve.
In terms of cut, the jersey is based on the brand's slim-fit jersey but employs a cut-down collar and lighter weight fabric on the front panel. Most of the jersey is manufactured from perforated 110g Italian fabric (83% polyester/17% elastane), which gives it its breathable attributes. This lightweight and porous approach, however, has done little to affect the opacity of the jersey which remains rich in colour. As a genuine summer garment, it's also UPF-40+ rated. The build quality is also impressive and, according to Invani, the company has had no customer returns caused by manufacturing faults on any of its ranges to date - impressive.
Other notable design features I quite like are the de rigueur raw-cut-edged sleeves, which bring across a tailored feel thanks to the stretch levels of the fabric and lack of restricting grippers. Despite the lightweight design ethos it still benefits from a handy three-pocket layout. As is often the case with lightweight, racy cycling jerseys, the pockets tend to be on the smaller side and offer very little stretch or volume. Invani's pockets offer relatively decent space and come emblazoned with reflective detailing, too (both sides). You'll also notice the lack of overt care/sizing label, which comes as a result of the reversible nature. That said, Invani has indeed included a label behind the left pocket of the black reversible side of the jersey.
As a rider who enjoys a racier cut, I naturally prefer my cycling clothing to fit like a second skin. More often than not, however, it's difficult to find the right size owing to the subtle disparities between brands but Invani has nailed its sizing philosophy. The XS pictured here fits perfectly where it counts - especially around the biceps, underarms, and chest area, where many of its rivals fall short. While there isn't any kind of gripper around the waist section, the slim fit together with the elastic stretch of fabric keeps everything in place and, for the most part, prevents the jersey from creeping up.
It's not the most utilitarian of cycling jerseys, but the deep pockets are supportive enough to carry small tools and your mobile phone. In fact, Invani also includes a complimentary 'Essential Case' which can be used to keep your essentials safe (it also fits comfortably within the central pocket).
Having used the jersey during a week-long hot spell over summer, I was left impressed by the ventilation properties of the fabric and the way it seemed to wick moisture and stay relatively dry. While I paired it with the Invani men's bib shorts for most of the time, the reversible/incognito nature of the jersey made kit matching with rival brands a straightforward and clashless experience. Those who enjoy Zwift will be happy to know it plays nicely as an indoor cycling jersey. The breathable, lightweight fabric and moisture management, means it's ideally suited to the humid and hot conditions associated with indoor training and racing.
In terms of real-world performance, the Invani men's summer jersey is exactly what it says in the description - a summer jersey. It does a great job when it comes to ventilation and keeping you cool, and the moisture management of the porous fabric is brilliant with very little in the way of saturation. As a result, it is better suited to warmer weather climates than here in the UK but can easily double up as an indoor cycling jersey owing to the ultralight, breathable fabric (it weighs just 99g, some 20g lighter than the Castelli equivalent). That said, if you prefer something a little warmer then you can check out the rest of the range which includes gilets, base layers, leg- and arm warmers.
The kicker? At £85 / $119 / €101,95 Invani has nailed the brief and created one of the best cycling jerseys currently available.
Tech Specs: Invani men's summer jersey
- Price: £85 / $119 / €101,95
- Materials: 83% polyester, 17% elastane
- Sizes: 5 (XS-XL)
- Weight: 99g (actual, XS)
- Colours: 2, reversible (black, navy blue)
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